California cities defy new mask mandate – The Hill
The story at a glance:
- Many city and business officials are unhappy with the new mask mandate in Los Angeles County.
- Some cities want to form their own public health services.
- Statewide, California has 195,571 active cases, a staggering daily increase of 5,349 new cases as of June 24; the bulk of cases are centered in Los Angeles County.
New COVID-19 cases continue to rise in California, prompting Los Angeles County officials to institute a new mask mandate regardless of vaccine status, angering some residents and politicians.
Resistance to mandates has prompted some local leaders to call on county officials to step down and some want to form their own public health departments, The Washington Post reports.
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“The county cannot handle our current situation,” said Councilman Tony Wu of West Covina, a town of about 110,000 in the eastern part of the county. “We are absolutely not going to enforce anything about this BS.”
The new delta variant has stoked old tensions between some government officials and business leaders and those with the municipal power to impose limited social functions or shut down a city as large as Los Angeles.
“We are fed up with these policies! We demand that you stop this one-size-fits-all approach to health and health outcomes,” elected officials from half a dozen cities, including El Segundo, Torrance and Manhattan Beach, wrote in a letter to their county supervisor this week. local. “We implore you to modify this recent order, engage with us, and establish a policy that better reflects the unique context of our region.”
In Los Angeles County, the largest county in the state, some cities have recently attempted to launch their own health services, including Torrance, West Covina and Beverly Hills.
“I’ve been advocating for Torrance to break away from the LA County Health Department for months now,” said Torrance City Councilman Aurelio Mattucci. “This latest mask mandate is really going to have a terrible effect on businesses, it’s really going to instill more fear in buyers and customers and that’s where I think we need to draw the line.”
Although Beverly Hills Mayor Robert Wunderlich thinks the new mask mandate is “justifiable” given the rise in cases, he asked, “Did they choose the optimal way?” I am not sure.”
His city is getting a expert to help officials understand the establishment of a public health service so that the city can, as Wunderlich puts it, “have things in our hands, so that we can make the decisions about the requirements and rules”.
Like Change America Previously reported, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) said if necessary the state would suspend its reopening in an effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus.
Citing the exponential growth in new coronavirus cases, Newsom said further reopening will depend on progress in reducing disease transmission.
“To the extent that we do not see progress, and we are not advancing the cause of public health and public safety, we certainly reserve the right to pause in terms of advancement in the next phase” , did he declare.
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Posted on July 23, 2021